The first decisive step as regards aviation in our country dates back to 1911, at the time of Minister of War Mahmut Şevket Pascha. Süreyya Bey was at the time tasked with making the
necessary arrangements. Under the minister's vigilant eye, two hangars and one runway were built at Sefaköy in January 1912, at the northern part of what is now Atatürk airport. This was the first step towards airport management, and became the flying school of Yeşilköy, the first aeronautical body in Turkey, which entered into operation on 3 July, 1912.

With the advent of the Republic, greater importance was given to aviation and efforts to establish a firm base were accelerated. After various phases, in the light of the maxim of Atatürk that "the future is in the skies" on 20 May, 1933 the State Airlines Enterprise, answerable to the Ministry of Defence, was created. Its mission was to establish air routes and provide air transport. Thus, air transport began between the principal cities of Turkey by using the aircraft bought previously for military purposes and adapted for the transport of passengers and freight.

Law No. 3424 of 3 June, 1938 brought about a change in the status of the State Airlines Enterprise into the Directorate-General for State Airlines, and attached it to the Ministry of Reconstruction. The construction of aerodromes was of prime importance in the first efforts devoted to aviation. Shortly after, the rapid development of transport services in civil aviation made it necessary to attach the aforementioned Directorate-General to the Ministry of Transport, which came to pass on 21 July, 1943 with the
passing of Law No. 4467.

The spectacular development of civil aviation quickly showed that it was irrational to entrust the management of aerodromes and aircraft to the same body. The functions were separated under Law No. 6623 of 21 May, 1955, when air transport was entrusted to the Turkish Airlines SA (THY: Turkish Airlines); while Law No. 6686 of 28 February, 1956 placed the administration of the aerodromes, ground services, air transport, air traffic
control and aeronautical communications under the responsibility of the Directorate-General of the State Airports Authority, which has its own legal personality and budgetary annex.

The management of the aerodromes using a budgetary annex soon ran into bottlenecks, and at this point in time Decree Law No. 116 created a State Enterprise for Aviation and Aerodromes (DHHMİ), which began operations on 18 November, 1983. Decree-Law No. 116 superseded Law No. 6686, and the State Airports Authority, managed by a budgetary annex, was
In its turn, the DG of the DHHMİ, by means of its Board of Directors, decided to create an aerodrome operating company with limited responsibility, and the latter, falling under the
dependent on the DHHMİ but with its own legal personality, came into operation as of 1 January ,1984.

Decree-Law No. 233 of 8 June, 1984, enacted by the Council of Ministers, reorganised the financial companies of the State, ending the existence of the DHHMİ and of the aerodrome operating company under it. Their assets, receivables and liabilities were set out in the closing balance sheet dated 30 November, 1984, except for their holding in S.A. THY, and in USAŞ, which were ceded to the DG Enterprise for State Aerodromes (DHMİ).
The State Airports Authority, endowed with its own legal personality and governed by Decree-Law No. 233 of 8 June, 1984, is a public-sector company, autonomous in its activities, and its responsibility is limited to its capital. It was born legally on 8 November, 1984, when its statutes entered into force, and the members of its Board of Directors were named. It began its functions on 1 December, 1984 and is currently pursuing these activities.


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